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Unholy Magic by Stacia Kane

Unholy Magic

by Stacia Kane

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This series is amazing. Unholy Magic finds Chess still struggling with addiction as well as overcoming her past. Its made very clear in this book how her drug use causes her no end of problems in her life. There is a powerful scene where she goes through a horrific withdrawal, also her addiction leads to her being blackmailed and used by various people for their own benefit. I love that Kane makes her characters so realistic and believable.
Through all the personal issues and stuggles with her relationships, there is a fast paced plot as well as a closer look at the Church of Truth. Personally, I find it horrifying that the church is able to not only punish people in life but also in the afterlife. Just the thought of fallible human beings being able to punish people after death is a scary concept.
The plot was great, for the Church, Chess is working on a reported haunting for a movie star family, and for Bump and Slobag, she is looking into a string of prostitute murders. This book was action packed and hard to put down. I can't wait to see how the series continues.
Stacia Kane has certainly found a place as one of my all time favorite authors with this series. ( )
  a.happy.booker | Mar 14, 2014 |
I loves this book and I love Terrible. Can't wait for City of Ghosts. Luckily it comes out later this month. ( )
  mlsimmons | Sep 20, 2013 |
Unholy Magic Terrible, I get you're hurting, but I s2g...
"A whore is honest."

You'd better shape up for the next one, cause I want to slap your face right off your face. ( )
  Isa_Lavinia | Sep 10, 2013 |
Reviewed by: Rabid Reads

My second trip into the world of Downside was a lot more satisfying than my first; this story focuses on Chess’ investigations rather than on her drug addiction which was my main beef with Unholy Ghosts. My frustrations over the heroine’s inability to think straight due to her addled state were somewhat alleviated in this installment so I was able to better appreciate the unique elements that this series has to offer. Unholy Magic still wasn’t a home run for me but I did enjoy it more than book one and expect this trend to continue as the story progresses which is all the incentive I need to see Chess’ tale through to the end.

After listening to two installments, I do believe that I am finally catching on to the DS lingo. It definitely took some getting used to at first but after spending hours immersed in Bahni Turpin’s narration I couldn’t help but notice that some of Kane’s slang words had found their way into my daily vocabulary, dig? I also think that this is one of those series’ that’s just better in audio; I have a sneaky suspicion that had I read the first book, I probably wouldn’t have made it to this one. The narrator does an outstanding job at bringing this tale to life; Chess can’t be an easy character to read, with her constant highs and lows, but Turpin successfully keeps pace with the heroine without even breaking a sweat.

The main plot revolves around sex magic, so, needless to say, there’s a lot of humping going on in this novel. By now you’re probably thinking sex = awesome, right? Sorry to disappoint, this is Urban Fantasy after all and there’s always a catch. Chess has a messed up past and an even more complicated present which makes her especially susceptible to this particular brand of magic. I really felt for her because Kane makes her reluctance believable and that’s a hard feat to accomplish in this type of situation. There are also a couple of very heart wrenching moments in Unholy Magic that added new levels of depth to the characters. I’m beginning to view many of them in a different light and my opinions of the DS crew are beginning to change for the better.

I like that for once it’s the heroine that’s undeserving; Chess has to prove herself worthy of Terrible instead of the other way around. It’s an interesting variation on the typical romantic relationship development and I look forward to having Putnam convince both Terrible and myself of her merit. Speaking of which, at first I didn’t really see the appeal of Bump’s right-hand man; undoubtedly he’s an alpha male and pretty darned smexy but he’s still a thug! I love a bad boy just as much as the next girl but I’m not that shallow; my men need to have a bit more substance to them! For me, Terrible came out of the woodwork in this installment with a few interesting revelations and by demonstrating some real moxie. I’m not sure how I feel about these two as a couple yet but they are definitely growing on me as individuals.

There’s no shortage of action or emotional drama in Unholy Magic and the character development was superb. So far, Stacia Kane’s Downside series has received a 3-star, followed by this 4 from me; let’s see if City of Ghosts can earn a 5. I think it will. ( )
  RabidReads | Sep 9, 2013 |
The way she dealt with her last case brought Chess more attention than she's happy with, but it also brings her a high profile case involving a famous actor. But she's maintaining, balanced on the highs and lows of her pills, her relationship with Terrible stretching her capacity to believe and still hiding her ties to Lex and Slobag.

So glad I discovered this series with multiple books available. Kane's characters may be flawed and tortured and possessed of some seriously bad habits, but they're incredibly appealing. ( )
  SunnySD | Aug 31, 2013 |
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Book description

For Chess Putnam, finding herself near-fatally poisoned by a con psychic and then stopping a murderous ghost is just another day on the job. As an agent of the Church of Real Truth, Chess must expose those looking to profit from the world’s unpleasant little poltergeist problem—humans filing false claims of hauntings—all while staving off any undead who really are looking for a kill. But Chess has been extra busy these days, coping with a new “celebrity” assignment while trying on her own time to help some desperate prostitutes.

Someone’s taking out the hookers of Downside in the most gruesome way, and Chess is sure the rumors that it’s the work of a ghost are way off base. But proving herself right means walking in the path of a maniac, not to mention standing between the two men in her life just as they—along with their ruthless employers—are moving closer to a catastrophic showdown. Someone is dealing in murder, sex, and the supernatural, and once again Chess finds herself right in the crossfire.
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Chess is a fiercely independent witch and talented Debunker - working for the Church of Real Truth to exorcise ghosts and expose human liars. But she has a dark little secret that is causing her a lot of problems - a drug addiction. Life is getting too complicated and Chess must break the rules to keep her head above water.… (more)

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Two editions of this book were published by Audible.com.

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